Monday, December 17, 2007

Sunday at Mali

Yesterday we visited an area called Mali (Mah-LEE) with our pastor and his wife. Mali is about 30 min. outside the city. Pastor Alfonso and his wife, Benedita, started an orphanage there last year. It consists of three houses, a large outdoor oven (used for baking bread for the orphanage and sell to the community), a barn for the goats, a garden, and pens for chickens, ducks and pigs. It's a regular farm! Coleson and Will went to a different church with friends so we just had Luke and Abby with us.
We followed behind Pastor's vehicle, stopping several times to pick up supplies on the way. Once we arrived at the orphanage everyone congregated in a little room to where they have their Sunday services. (They have essentially started a church here for the orphanage and for anyone in the surrounding area to attend)
(PHOTOS are of differing qualities due to the sad condition of our camera which I fear is operating on it's last leg AND due to the dreary weather conditions yesterday.)

On the way we drove past the part of Maputo that we lovingly call "Home Depot". Can you identify any materials you could use for home improvements? (click on the photo to see more detail.)

To get to Mali you must leave the paved road leading out of Maputo and get on this bumpy dirt road. That's Pastor A's truck in front of us. The double cab held him, his wife, daughter, niece, and nephew. The bed of the truck held his two sons, another guy we didn't know, three cases of cokes in bottles, large sacks of corn meal and sugar, their bags of clothes and other boxes and containers of supplies for the orphanage.

Luke carrying his little friend into the church service.
The kids all sat on mats on the floor. The pastor's sermon was about Christmas and why December is the most important month of the year. Because geared towards the children and very simple I understood his Portuguese!

After church the ladies headed straight to the kitchen where they began preparing lunch - chicken cooked with onions and garlic, rice, and coleslaw. It was delicious!
Emanuel and Fatima peeling garlic
Making the coleslaw

While they prepared lunch Pastor Alfonso and Benedita took us on a tour of the "farm". As we were completing our tour we could hear rain coming. We made it back to the porch just in time to escape a drenching.

Luke entertaining the crowd with his new hairstyle
Pastor Alfonso, Charlie and Benedita. That's the goat barn behind them.

Abby, Luke and the kids who live there enjoyed digging in a big pile of dirt. They were filthy by the time we were ready to go home. There are currently 11 children that live at the orphanage. Pastor and Benedita and their own children were staying there overnight so that today they could pass out little Christmas packages (cookies, some candy and a balloon) to these kids and other children that live in the area.

They also grow pineapple there.

And I think they may be eating ham out there today - they slaughtered a pig right after lunch yesterday. Luke and Abby saw the poor pig shortly after his demise and were quite fascinated, not grossed out like I thought they would be. Luke told us that the pig had gizzards coming out of his neck. I think we need to work on our farm animal facts as I'm pretty sure a pig does not have a gizzard.

Pastor Alfonso greeting one of the pigs.


mer said...

Ummm...I'm suddenly craving pineapple.

I love reading about your life in Africa...and I love seeing the photos too. The picture of the women cooking made me smile, yet realize how easy my life must be compared to theirs.

I need to email you because I was at an Advent retreat on Saturday, and our speaker shared some stories of missionary days in Mozambique. I'd like to tell you about her.

So glad your pastor was sharing the message of Christmas with those children yesterday. I was blessed just reading about it.

Love to you guys!

Everyday Christ said...

Loved the story - I can't wait to start visiting places like this and get involved. Did you hear any of the kids' stories about how they came to that orphanage?

Steve, Joanna, Elizabeth, Noah, and Emma said...

I love seeing these pictures!!!!

Dee Dee said...

I bet it felt great to understand the message in Portugese! We have a fairly large Hispanic population in Clinton, and I'm always eavesdropping on people in line at WalMart to see how much Spanish I can understand. Sadly, not much!

Dee Dee